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Financial Advisors Can Add Value – But Consumers Should Be Cautious says Thomas Mousa, CEO of TLK Partners

Australian investors would be burying their heads in the sand if they were to ignore the [recent scandals involving wealth management companies](https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2018/nov/27/bank-bosses-before-the-royal-commission-nab-amp-live), says Thomas Mousa, CEO of TLK Partners. He says that although research shows better returns for those who get expert help with structuring their financial life, individuals and businesses should be cautious about who they choose to assist them.

It seems like a bit of a no-brainer, but the recent AMP court case uncovered that the companys financial advisors lacked the education to understand that they were breaking the law with some of their charges. Needless to say, the warning signs had been there for some time, with a high rate of banned advisors in an industry where even one banning should be a shocker.

Apart from understanding how the law governs their business relationship with their clients, financial advisors must understand markets and have proven their mettle in the past. If they havent, investors are giving them their assets to experiment with.

Thomas points out that an investors financial advisor might have vested interests. They arent financial advisors as much as they are salespeople for a specific firms products.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with asking a financial advisor whether he has any affiliations or receives any commissions, says Thomas. Its not necessarily a deal-breaker if he is, but then you know that hes selling rather than advising and that you should still get impartial advice elsewhere.

A financial management company should explain how fees are calculated, what fees are charged, and what fee options it offers. It is absolutely essential that investors ask what the maximum fees they will be charged would amount to since there will be times when they–ll need extra consultation time. Uncapped fees could present consumers with an unpleasant surprise.

Paying an unspecified amount to a person who provides an unspecified service for opaque reasons is clearly not the way to look after investors financial future. A financial advisor should be able to explain what youre paying for, what you get, and why certain funds or fund managers are recommended.

Thomas says that TLK Partners believes in educating its clients and equipping them with the knowledge they need for a clear understanding of their financial life. I could just take a fee and impress you with a lot of jargon and my reputation as a financial expert, he says, but thats not the way we work.

At TLK, empowering our clients is our aim. After all, its their money. Were not asking for blind faith. Were looking for smart clients who are going to ask questions, challenge us, and make recommendations of their own. A lot of our clients dont start from that position, but we help them to reach it.

According to Thomas, getting expert help with financial planning and wealth management is the smart way to grow wealth. But expert or not, financial advisors should be keeping you in the drivers seat.

Ideally, he or she should be the one insisting on reporting to you frequently. Investors should have absolute clarity on how their wealth is managed, why, and what administration and other costs they should expect to pay.

Some financial managers might prefer it if their clients dont take an interest in wealth management matters, says Thomas, but at TLK, we believe absolute transparency is vital. Keeping our clients informed is part of our code of ethics at TLK. Trust is a fundamental in our business, and trust is earned.

Thomas Mousa is a partner at TLK Partners, a company that takes care of the wealth management and accounting needs of ordinary folk, small and medium businesses, and high value individuals. [TLK Partners, Chartered Accountants and Wealth Management Company](https://tlkpartners.com.au/)website, or call (02) 8090 4324.

This material is of a general nature only, it does not take into consideration your financial circumstances, needs or objectives. Before making any decision based on this content, you should assess your own circumstances, seek professional advice or contact our office to be directed to the appropriate professional. Whilst all care has been taken in presenting the material neither TLK Partners or its associated entities guarantee that the material is free of error and, the information may have changed since being published.

Syndicated by [Baxton Media](https://baxtonmedia.me/).

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Posted by on Dec 23 2018. Filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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